(if people fail, they may migrate to safer places in other parts of the country immediately)
Director, Center for Environmental Studies,
GITAM University, Visakhapatnam
Director, Center for Environmental Studies,
GITAM University, Visakhapatnam
ABSTRACT: Presently there is a serious controversy between the Nuclear Power Corporation of India (NPCIL) the Central Information Commission (CIC) and the social activists on the issues of nuclear safety reports being made available to the public as per International Standards. But the NPCIL is refusing to supply the reports to the activists under the pretext of proprietary while the people are demanding for them under the Right to Information Act. Many people are doubting why the nuclear safety reports affecting the public are not made available to the people. The Nuclear Power Corporation of India knows fully about the inevitable accidents that Kudankulam nuclear reactors will experience in its present location due to human failures, mechanical failures, electrical failures, earthquakes, tsunamis, major cyclones, air attacks, enemy bombings and other hazards and also about its underestimates of radiological impacts on the people, the animal populations and the natural eco-systems including fisheries and public safety and hence is bent upon misleading the Prime Minister and the Chief Minister of Tamilnadu on nuclear safety and thereby is presenting them before the public as the International environmental criminals like Hitler who violated all human ethics and morals and used gas chambers to poison and slowly kill millions of Jews and others during the second world war in a democratic social welfare state as envisaged by Mahatma Gandhi the common people of India should fight against the proposed killer nuclear reactors which are going to take away the right to life, right to livelihood and the right to environmental resources including marine fishery wealth which should be made available not only for their sustainable development but also for the survival of their progeny. The educated people and intellectuals must show their concern for public welfare and national prosperity as responsible citizens and discharge their duties to protect the environmental resources as envisaged by the great Prime Minister Mrs.Indira Gandhi under Article 51 A(g) of the constitution of India. Like Mahatma Gandhi who preached against 7 social evils and demanded to work for the welfare of the people the Pope who is also for promoting peace and prosperity must work against nuclear plants all over the world by advising the leaders of various countries including India where the nuclear lobby is exerting its undue pressure over the administration to promote the riskiest nuclear power in preference to other alternate sources of energy which are not only safe and economical but are also socially acceptable.
1) INTRODUCTION: The recent controversy between the anti-nuclear activists and the nuclear plant authorities pertain to the objections raised by the Kudankulam plant authorities to the order issued by the Central Information commission (CIC) under the Right to Information Act for releasing safety report on Kudankulam nuclear reactors. The nuclear plant authorities are saying that they are holding Kudankulam Safety Analysis Report (SAR) in a fiduciary capacity on behalf of a Russian company. The nuclear plant authorities are threatening to go to court if CIC does not modify its orders on sharing the safety analysis report prepared by Russians and it will show a copy of safety analysis report for individuals as it is classified as a proprietary document. But the site evaluation report was made available to Dr.S.P.Udaykumar the applicant under the Right to Information Act. The nuclear plant authorities are requesting the CIC to review and modify the order it passed on 30-4-2012 on the subject. Site evaluation report was furnished in the form of an executive summary while the activists demanding for a full pledged SAR report which may not have any information related to reactor design.
2) SITE EVALUATION REPORT INCLUDES PUBLIC AND ENVIRONMENTAL SAFETY:
Under these circumstances the problem can be resolved by the anti-nuclear activists and CIC by insisting on the supply of Kudankulam SAR that contains about 10,000 pages in about 35 volumes but must insist on supply of the full reports of site evaluation report including the preliminary safety analysis report before commencement of construction of the plant and also the final safety analysis report prepared before the reactors go into operation. These reports are crucial for the public as they deal with the radioactive pollution arising out of routine releases during the period of normal operations and also emergency release of radioactivity into the environment during an inevitable nuclear explosion caused by natural disasters or manmade accidents. Safety Evaluation Report also contains source terms are emergency radioactive releases during an explosion and their dispersion in the air, environment, water resources and soil resources and their impacts on public health and safety. This report also contains risk analysis anticipated radiation exposures to people and animal populations at different distances from the plant and the methods used for evacuation of people to safer places within the stipulated times. This emergency evacuation procedures must be handled mostly under the responsibilities of Panchayats and District officials who may receive technical assistance from the central Government agencies. The Tamilnadu state Government must realize that while the nuclear plant costs only Rs.14,000 crores, the costs of damage that the Government has to bear in case of an accident will be about Rs.4 lakh crores for payment of compensation to the victims including costs of decontamination and decommissioning of plant. The operation of the Kudankulam nuclear plant shall be permitted if only the concerned local people are convinced that the evacuation of people due to an accident at Kudankulam is possible and feasible as demonstrated by the Tamilnadu government by holding mock drills before the commencement of the production of electricity from the proposed reactors. If this mock drill shows that it is not possible to implement emergency response systems as planned by the state and central Governments the reactors can be stopped in public interest.
3) SITE EVALUATION REPORT SHOWS THAT THE REACTORS ARE HAZARDOUS:
According to the site evaluation report by the official experts the Kudankulam reactors are confirmed as slow killer reactors as can be seen from the reasons under the following websites
According to the stipulated methods for construction of nuclear plants three separate reports on site evaluation must be prepared at different times based upon the stage of progress of the project . For instance the first stage report deals with site selection. The second stage report deals with safety analysis report to be presented before commencement of construction work and the third stage resort must be prepared before the reactor goes into operation or becomes critical to commence production of electricity. At present the official site evaluation pertaining to the stage-II report has been prepared because the construction work commenced in 2001. But the preliminary safety analysis report (PSAR) which is a prerequisite for grant of Government clearance to commence construction of the plant on the site is completed and its copy has been obtained under Right to Information Act by the nuclear activists. But this report has not been furnished to the people for public hearing and it is said to have been submitted to Atomic Energy Regulation Board (AERB) which is not an organization accountable for protection of public health, the environment and the national economy of the country and it is under the control of the Prime Minister who is the promoter of nuclear plants.
Pre-operational safety report under stage-III has to be prepared before the nuclear reactors go into production and this resort is prepared in order to complete and refine the site characteristics and to confirm assumptions made in the safety analysis of the reactor as a part of the final safety analysis report (FSAR). Even this FSAR report has not been placed before the public of Kudankulam and Tamilnadu for whose benefit the project is supposed to have been taken to attain the final stage of production of electricity. This report is not placed before the public to receive the suggestions from the public to make the project safer, economical and useful to the state and the country.
4) REACTORS CAN BE STOPPED IN JUNE 2012 THROUGH PUBLIC INTEREST LITIGATION:
Even at this stage the Kudankulam reactors can be stopped if only Mrs.Sonia Gandhi leader of the Congress party of India can be properly educated on the impending disastrous consequences of a reactor explosion due to human errors or other causes as had happened at Chernobyl in 1986 or Fukushima in 2011. Since the Prime Minister of India and the Chief Minister of Tamilnadu are going ahead with the project inspite of the greatest risks this country is going to face including economic bankruptcy due to an inevitable explosion at Kudankualm reactor in the long run. The more enlightened members of Parliament like Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi must be properly advised by enlightened world citizens including the Pope who like Mahatma Gandhi is strongly pleading for abandonment of nuclear plants all over the world By opposing the commencement of these reactors the world leaders will only help directly or indirectly to stop the escalating levels of poverty, disease, unemployment, economic and ecological ruination of several countries as a nuclear accident in any country tantamount to a nuclear accident in any other country in the world as the world is becoming a global village.
5) TAMILNADU SHOULD USE LIGNITE IN PLACE OF RISKIER AND COSTLIER NUCLEAR POWER:
In the case of Kudankulam nuclear reactors the arguments put forward by the Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and the Chief Minister of Tamilnadu Jayalalitha are very childish. The argument that the Tamilnadu needs more power is accepted by everybody but the common people want that state and central governments must give preference for more safer, economical and ecological sound electricity production units based on oil, natural gas and renewable energy sources like solar power, bio-fuels and wind in place of the most riskiest, costliest and ecological destructive nuclear plants.
If the lignite coal from Neyveli mines in Tamilnadu is proposed to be exported to generate more electricity in other distant states like Uttara Pradesh and Orissa, the millions of people in Southern states who will be effected by the radioactive pollution from the proposed reactors they have a natural right to demand that the same lignite coal available in plenty within the state can be better used to produce the same electrical power by replacing the most riskiest Kudankulam nuclear reactors which are imported from foreign countries like Russia at an exorbitant cost that adversely effects the national economy and the health and welfare of the people of south India. Tamilnadu state can have thermal stations that can use plenty of resources like Lignite coal, coal, oil or natural gas and these resources can be used at Kudankulam by making necessary modifications to make use of the already constructed nuclear reactors so that there will not be any economic loss to the country. The argument that if the Kudankulam reactors are not allowed to function immediately the investment of Rs.14,000 crores made for the plant will become useless.
6)NUCLEAR ACCIDENT CAUSES LOSS OF Rs. 4 LAKH CRORES FOR A PLANT OF Rs.14,000 CRORES:
If these nuclear reactors are started and if they are going to experience an explosion due to several natural and man-made causes as in Fukushima or Chernobyl it will result in an economic loss to the country of about Rs.4 lakh crores as estimated by Japan to pay for the victims of the Fukushima accident. Hence it will be much cheaper and safer to abandon the proposal to make the Kudankulam reactors critical immediately, because such an effort is bound to ruin the fisheries wealth in the Bay of Bengal and the agriculture and animal husbandry operations in Southern Tamilnadu and the public health of millions of people in southern states particularly in Tamilnadu and Kerala on a large scale according to the latest scientific atmospheric radioactive dispersion modeling made by the scientists of Germany.
7) SHOULD CHILDREN COLLECT MONEY TO REPAY COST OF KUDANKULAM REACTORS?:
Recently children in a few villages of cuddapah district in Andhra Pradesh started to collect funds by begging in the streets to send that money to AP State Government which is promoting liquor drinking among the people. Since the children have realized that because of such evil actions of the state Government their parents are becoming addicted to drinking liquor and face malnutrition and early deaths with the result that the entire families are getting ruined. As a solution to resolve this problem the children began to beg in the public streets to collect money and send it to the state Government to stop such an evil act that ruins their lives. Similarly the children in Tamilnadu and other states may be inspired by the genuine social activities to undertake a similar activity to repay the cost of Rs.14,000 crores to the Union Government to stop these riskiest reactors which are nothing but slow killers of mankind and natural life systems, the foundation stones for the survival of the planet earth.
8) TAMILNADU STATE REFUSES TO KNOW HOW KUDANKULAM WILL BE A WHITE ELEPHANT TO THE STATE AND A HAZARD TO PUBLIC HEALTH AND SAFETY OF TAMILIANS:
The Tamilnadu Chief Minister refuses to know that according to the National Disaster Management Authority guidelines on the role of the District, Government and Panchayat officials in Southern districts of Tamilnadu that they have to prepare air pollution modeling studies for dispersion of radioactivity for the different fluctuating magnitude and directions of the winds that carry the pollutants for hundreds of kilometers downwind for preparing the risk analysis, nuclear explosion scenario, emergency evacuation and resettlement and disaster management plans as per stipulated guidelines of the the Government of India.
The Chief Minister of Tamilnadu also refuses to know that the state has to spend more than Rs.4 lakh crores rupees to meet the costs of compensation to the victims of reactor accident pollution as had happened at Fukushima as per the estimates made by the Japanese Government., in case such an accident becomes inevitable at Kudankulam in course of time.
Taking these into consideration, emergency situations are classified as
1) plant emergency alert,
1) plant emergency alert,
2) plant emergency,
3) site emergency, and
4) off-site emergency.
While the operating organization of the plant are responsible for handling the first three categories of emergencies,
off-site emergencies are handled by the State authorities with the technical input and guidance from operating organization of the plant and regulatory authority.
An exclusion area of appropriate size (at least 1.5 km radius from the reactor centre) shall be established around the reactor and entry to this is to be restricted to authorized personnel only. Thus the population falling within the exclusion zone, if any, is only resettled. The sterilized zone is the annulus between the exclusion zone and an area up to 5 km from the plant. The AERB code states in this regard:
“A sterilised area up to 5 km around the plant shall be established by administrative measures where the growth of population will be restricted for effective implementation of emergency measures. Natural growth, however, is allowed in this zone”.
Thus, there is no displacement involved in the sterilized zone.
9) QUESTIONS TO BE ANSWERED BY TAMILNADU STATE IF IT CAN SHOULDER EMERGENCY EVACUATION PROCEDURES TO ESNURE SAFETYOF TAMILIANS?:
The anti-nuclear activists at Kudankulam must raise the public issues concerning the safety of the plant and the people including the emergency evacuation procedures proposed to be followed in case of a maximum credible accident at Kudankulam.
Does the state Government have the knowledgeable experts who can decide the levels of exposure and at what time intervals the radiation levels exceed the specified limits and whether such victims can be transported in time to safer places outside their residential areas and for what interval of time they should be kept outside their residential areas and brought back to their native places after decontaminating their houses, schools, roads and agriculture fields over a period of 5 to 20 years.
10) COST OF NUCLEAR ACCIDENT IS SEVERAL TIMES HIGHER THAN THE REACTORS:
A) Does the Chief Minister of Tamilnadu know that while the Kudankulam reactors cost Rs.14,000 crores only the costs of damage to the victims of pollution due to an accident cost the people of Tamilnadu Rs.4 lakh crores to pay compensation to the victims on the same pattern followed in the case of the Bhopal disaster.
B) As the Tamilnadu Government sufficient numbers of skilled man power to help in the evacuation of victims of radioactivity due to explosion accompanied with sufficient numbers of vehicles for transporting the victims to safer places and provide necessary medical and infrastructure facilities.
C) Are the non-governmental organizations prepared to study the reports in the websites on risk analysis, accident scenario and emergency preparedness including Disaster Management plans as prepared by the Nuclear Power Corporation of India and in their absence whether similar reports prepared by Indian experts can be studied by the anti-nuclear activists under the website and take further necessary action and educate the public in all the villages and towns of Tamilnadu.
11) BY BEING INDIFFERENT TO EDUCATE THE PUBLIC ON THE INEVITABLE POISONING OF TAMILIANS DUE TO ROUTINE AND ACCIDENTAL RADIOACTIVE RELEASES FROM KUDANKULAM, ARE THE INTELLECTUALS OF INDIA OPTING TO COMMIT SOCIAL CRIMES?
Mahatma Gandhi said that science without humanity is one of the 7 social evils and we should not succumb to such evils and as educated people we have to discharge our responsibilities as true citizens of India as envisaged by the late Prime Minister Mrs.Indira Gandhi who amended article 51 A(g) of the constitution of India to protect the environment for the good of the nation. In the case of the Kudankulam reactors it is well established that we have several alternate sources of energy which are not only cheap but also safe and promote sustainable development. But the Kudankulam reactors are killers of mankind and they should be stopped.
In this connection the anti-nuclear activists must be prepared to raise the question of displacement of people to avoid exposure to excessive levels of radiation and for the purpose whether the Government has prepared plans for emergency evacuation for a distance of a) 1.5km b) 5km c) 10kms d) 16kms e)20kms f) 30km g) 50km or h) 80km from the nuclear power plant as per the different standards followed in different countries or whether the nuclear plant authorities are prepared to follow the International standards of IAEA which stipulates 25km distance from the plant for exposure zone and 300kms for ingestion zone as can be from the websites.
Father Thomas Kochhery has rightly presented the views of Mahatma Gandhiji which echo the basic principles of Christianity which inspire people to lover other people is love of fellowmen as love of God and service to fellowmen is service to God and the Pope as the world leader who can influence the thinking of millions of people also take the lead as it involves the question of life and death to millions of people of the present and future generations as envisaged by the International scientific experts like Jos Lelieveld at Max Planck Institute, Germany under the website.
If the anti-nuclear activists and lovers of mankind and nature are not able to educate the people all over the Tamilnadu state on the hazards of the Kudankulam reactors they will be not only indirectly abutting the crime of poisoning the whole tamil population and Kerala population for several decades to come but they will also help in this destruction of all eco-systems and poison the marine wealth which is used as protein food by millions of Indians along the coastline of India and these people will be ultimately poison by consuming the protein rich fisheries which are being poisoning by the radioactive pollutants like Tritium in the Inland and marine coastal waters of USA and Canada as can be seen from several websites including the main organ website http://www.dianuke.org/ and the link articles in it.
12) LOCAL PEOPLE CAN APPROACH COURTS AND GREEN TRIBUNAL FOR SOLUTIONS:
If the people likely to be effected by the Kudankulam nuclear plant hazards they have to seek the protection of their right to life and right to livelihood, the right to environment by taking the help of the High Courts and Supreme Court by filing a Public Interest Litigation cases as being followed by other environmental activists in other parts of India and thereby they may be able to succeed even by approaching the Green Tribunals recently set up in the country which are dealing with the similar cases like the one relating to Jaitapur nuclear plant. Just like the Bhopal disaster was a manmade crime the Kudankulam nuclear accident waiting in the wings will be another manmade crime that costs in damages several lakhs of crores of rupees which will make the state and the country get into an economical bankrupt state.
13) WORLD CITIZENS MUST REQUEST POPE AND OTHERS TOGET NUCLEAR PLANTS BANNED:
The present generation of people in Tamilnadu have no inherent rights to poison the youth the future citizens of India and the children yet to be born by foreclosing their options to live on earth. The Pope may kindly take these problems of ethics, morals, human values and the present day administrative structures which are invading over the rights of the people and making a mockery of a democratic social welfare state for which lakhs of people of people in India laid their lives in the freedom struggle to see their progeny in a happy and prosperous land.